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An Interpretive Van Gogh experience shines in McKinney

Updated: Jan 12

Many of you know of the Immersive Van Gogh experience currently being held in Dallas. The experience envelops one with sight, sound and intensity. However in McKinney, a hidden jewel of art has opened its doors to some local artists who rose to the challenge of painting iconic McKinney locations in Van Gogh style.

“Reflection on a Starry Night” (Location: Adriatica) by Artist, Marley Lindsey

The paintings were done in watercolor, pen and ink, acrylic, and oil. Some of the paintings came with historical stories like Rachel Visser’s, whose parents went to Croatia with the Adriatica developer to learn about the architecture and underpinnings of creating a village which later turned into our beautifully crafted mini-city at the intersection of Virginia and Ridge Roads. Rachel’s painting of the Bell Tower pays homage to her parents participation in Adriatica’s creation as well as pays homage to the many times she has watched fireworks from inside the Bell Tower.

“The Bell Tower at Adriatica” by Artist, Rachel Visser.

Each artist has a different story about the challenge. Some artists who are members of the Art Club of McKinney (Diane Boudreaux, Carol Kovacs, Deanna McGarr, and Kim Guthrie) are avid challenge fans. If they loved participating the in Marshalling Matisse Exhibit, then they were up for the Van Gogh challenge. Other painters were newer to the Heard-Craig art challenge scene but were very excited about joining in (Crisana Speer, Karen Robb, and Pam Ewell).

And, of course, the Master of them all, “Joan of Art” (Joan Barber (artist as well as art instructor extraordinaire), brings her students into each art challenge which creates a magical environment for all. Joan, as did many in this challenge, painted beautiful scenes of Adriatica for the enjoyment of community members.

“Adriatica” by Artist, Joan Barber

“Reflections on Bella Donna” (Chapel at Adriatica) by Crisana Speers

“Adriatica Dove” (Statue at Adriatica) by Artist, Pam Ewell

On the Museum front, several artists painted the downtown Museum triad (Collin County History museum, Heard-Craig, and Chestnut Square).

“Starry Night Over the Chapel at Chestnut Square” by Artist, Carol Kovacs

“Crossroads of Old and New: 12/31/22” (History Museum) by Artist, Marley Lindsey

“Heard-Craig Center Van Gogh Style” by Artist, Diane Boudreaux

One of the interesting things about the exhibit is that the interpretation of style is distinctly different. For instance, Kim Guthrie, an artist who has her workshop right on the downtown square, immortalized the Episcopal Church with her modern brushstrokes and vivid, colorful palette. (See more of her work at:

“Starry Night in Heavenly Realms” (St. Peter’s Episcopal Church) by Artist, Kim Guthrie

In addition to churches, chapels and museums, artists brought to life the parks of McKinney such as Gabe Nesbitt Park and Towne Lake Park.

“Swirling Summer Starry Night” (Towne Lake Park) by Artist, Deana McGarr

“Splish Splash Over McKinney” (Gabe Nebitt Park) by Artist, Karen J. Robb

The "Starry Night Over McKinney" exhibit is open to the public through January 31. FREE tickets are available on the Heard-Craig website (Click here for tickets). The hours for the exhibit are Tuesday - Friday from 9:00 - Noon and Saturdays from 1:00 - 3:00 PM. If those times are not convenient, please call and we will schedule a more convenient time for you to bring a group here.

All of the exhibit paintings are for sale in the price range of $50 - $450. This is your opportunity to own an interpretive piece of iconic McKinney during an environmental period of the Van Gogh immersive experience (makes a great story for the family) so come by and support our local artists who not only enjoy the Heard-Craig art challenges but love the beneficial monetary rewards of participating in events like this that benefit the cultural district and the entire community.

For more information, call 972-569-6909 or get your FREE tickets at

And a sneak peek: For artists who want to start thinking about the next art challenge, it will be "Of the Cultural Ballet", created in the general style of Edgar Degas.


The Heard-Craig Center is a SMITHSONIAN AFFILIATE MUSEUM, located in the heart of the McKinney, Texas downtown square. The Center is supported, in part, by wonderful grants from the McKinney Community Development Corporation and the McKinney Convention and Visitor's Bureau, and by private donations from individuals and community citizens. The museum is open to the public for tours on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays at 1:00 PM and is open to donors and purchasers of art through appointments 7 days a week. 972-569-6909.

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